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Best Z490 Motherboards in 2022

Match up your 10th gen Intel processor with one of the best boards currently out there
Last Updated on March 14, 2022

As well as the recent CPU and chipset launches that have been going on from AMD and the usual levels of hysteria they cause, it’s almost been possible to forget that Intel has launched their 10th Gen processors and that they are too a big deal.

Moving to the new LGA 1200 socket means that anybody interested in this later silicon iteration is going to need a new motherboard. Simply trying to cram a 10th gen into a 9th gen motherboards is going to be a costly mistake.

That means upgrading to Intel’s latest and greatest is a sizeable upgrade on tech and simultaneous downgrade on the amount of money in your wallet, as you will also need to pick up a new mobo with the LGA 1200 socket on board at the same time.

Fortunately some great models are already hitting the streets and these come in a range of specs and models to suit most build budgets.

Of course, when you add the 10th gen chip to the basket at the same time, not much is going to feel ‘budget’ about what you are buying, but you should be safe in the knowledge that your purchase will last you a good few years before you need to hit the upgrade trail once more.

So here our initial thoughts on five of the best Z490 motherboards out there for your new 10th gen Intel CPU. More boards are arriving all the time as this is very much a new line, so this page could end up being updated frequently as we get more and more surprises, but right now, any of the five we have picked here will set you firmly off on your 10th gen adventure.

Let’s go

Products at a Glance

Our Recommended

Best Z490 Motherboards in 2022

1.
PROS
  • Great storage options
  • Contemporary, functional design
  • Heatsinks and smart fans keep things chilled
CONS
  • ‘Limited’ to 128GB RAM
2.
PROS
  • Superb cooling
  • hree M.2 slots
  • Good connectivity
  • Support for 256GB RAM
CONS
3.
PROS
  • Affordable for most budgets
  • Great cooling
  • Similar styling to much more expensive boards
CONS
  • Throttled performance compared to high-end boards
4.
PROS
  • Popular board loved by many
  • Good cooling
  • Affordable
CONS
  • Only basic updates from Z390
  • Perhaps more expensive than it needs to be
5.
PROS
  • Great audio
  • Good cooling performance
  • Good connectivity
  • Superb overclocking
CONS

What’s new in the Z490 boards?

Z490 boards are an incremental upgrade to support Intel’s new socket design the LGA 1200. Its main advantages over its aging sibling is faster memory support, optional 2.5GB ethernet, and wireless Wifi 6 standard protocol.

The new socket is the big deal here as it means to get close to the 10th gen chips you need a new mobo too. The package of the actual chips themselves is the same meaning that existing coolers will fit just fine, but just don’t try and ram a 10th gen CPU into a 9th gen socket and vice versa.

Besides that, the chipsets are remarkably similar between Z390 and Z490 but it’s the access to the new socket that is going to cost you.

Our Verdict

Make no mistake these are all great boards and it will come down almost entirely down to your budget. We believe you can spend perhaps more than you need to, when you consider than you also have to buy a new CPU making this a not unsubstantial upgrade.

You can trim some of the cost off your build by ruling out things such as extra memory slots and heading for the boards that are aimed more at gamers.

If you want to overclock the living daylights out of your new Comet Lake though have a look at the Apex.

We like all these boards here, which is why we chose them from the large list of what’s available but if push comes to shove, Godlike is the one we would go for in the end if money was no object.